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Home Office #knifefree lesson plans for KS3 & KS4

gang of youths

Earlier this year, the Home Office launched a new campaign, #knifefree, with a dedicated campaign website ( that aimed to reduce knife crime.

The Home Office's #Knifefree campaign seeks to steer people away from knife crime by making them aware of the risks and highlighting positive alternatives to carrying a knife. The campaign aims to reduce knife crime by changing the attitudes and behaviours of young people (ages 10 to 21).

The Home Office has developed new PSHE education lesson plans (one for key stage three, and one for key stage four) that cover educating young people about the dangers of social media, the impact carrying a knife could have on their future and how they can develop strategies to resist peer influence. The lessons take an interactive approach using young people's real-life stories, and they are free to download from the PSHE Association's website here.

The two lessons aim to help students to do the following:

  • Recognise and evaluate the risks of carrying a knife
  • Challenge common misconceptions about knife crime
  • Develop strategies to manage peer influence to carry a knife
  • Explore how young people can choose to live knife-free and achieve their potential. 

Accompanying teacher guidance will help teachers to plan the lessons into the PSHE curriculum, which provides an ideal context for this learning, as the subject develops knowledge and understanding of key concepts such as risk, identity and power, and skills relating to decision-making and managing peer influence. These lessons are, therefore, best suited for delivery alongside topics exploring personal safety or gang crime.

First published 03 September 2018